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Why We Should Encourage Modern Foreign Language Learning

FE News – Sabine Schnorr

“It’s often said that children pick up new skills quickly; that their brains are like sponges and that they absorb information more rapidly. There’s also a perception that it’s easier to learn a language when you’re young and that you’re more likely to become fluent if you start early.” (more)

Connections Go a Long Way for Students With Trauma

Edutopia – Lori Desautels

“We’re learning a lot lately about how adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) deeply affect children’s brain development, behavior, and emotional, mental, and physiological health outcomes both while they’re in school and later in life. ACEs impact people’s ability to self-regulate and form healthy relationships, and they impair learning.” (more)

5 ways to truly help principals succeed

E-School News – Laura Ascione

“Principals and districts benefit when principal supervisors move beyond the role of administrator to coach and mentor, according to a new Vanderbilt University report. It is the first of three studies of The Wallace Foundation’s Principal Supervisor Initiative, a four-year, $24 million effort studied by Vanderbilt and Mathematica Policy Research. The report, “A New Role Emerges for Principal Supervisors: Evidence from Six Districts in the Principal Supervisor Initiative,” details the implementation of five key components to reshape the supervisor position in six large, urban school districts.” (more)

In the Aftermath of Katrina-Inspired School Reforms, Report Shows New Orleans Students Are Now More Likely to Attend — and Graduate From — College

The 74 Million – Kevin Mahnken

“Sweeping education reforms introduced in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina have dramatically lifted students’ chances of finishing high school and entering college, according to a new policy brief released this week by the Education Research Alliance for New Orleans. Even more striking, the new policies appear to have narrowed large gaps in educational attainment between advantaged and disadvantaged students.” (more)

Borsuk: Literacy may not be a constitutional right, but it’s a life imperative

The Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel – Alan J. Borsuk

“A federal judge a few days ago rejected a lawsuit that claimed that many students in Detroit were being denied their constitutional right to become literate. The judge was sympathetic. He called the academic record of Detroit schools “devastating.” But a right under the U.S. Constitution to be taught successfully to read and write? Nope. But what if we took it as an obligation, if not a constitutional requirement, to lead a lot more children to be literate so they make it to third grade able to read and to high school graduation with the skills needed for college and the workplace?” (more)

Seven things research reveals — and doesn’t — about Advanced Placement

The Washington Post – Valerie Strauss

“The Advanced Placement program is engaged in a tenuous balancing act. The program aims to serve more students from marginalized backgrounds whose schooling experiences have exposed them to few rigorous learning opportunities. At the same time, it seeks to engage students in challenging, college-level curricula, thereby enhancing their likelihood of postsecondary success.” (more)

Celebrating positives improves classroom behavior and mental health

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Training teachers to focus their attention on positive conduct and to avoid jumping to correct minor disruption improves child behaviour, concentration and mental health. A study led by the University of Exeter Medical School, published in Psychological Medicine, analysed the success of a training programme called the Incredible Years Teacher Classroom Management Programme. Its core principles include building strong social relationship between teachers and children, and ignoring low-level bad behaviour that often disrupts classrooms.” (more)

So your child refuses to go to school? Here’s how to respond

Medical X-Press – Jade Sheen And Amanda Dudley

“Have you had to deal with grumbling kids who don’t want to go back to school after the winter holidays? While some school reluctance is normal, spare a thought for parents whose back-to-school struggles have reached a whole new dimension. Their child’s reluctance to go to school has escalated into a more significant psychological problem, called school refusal.” (more)

Empowering Kids In An Anxious World

NPR – Cory Turner

“Rates of anxiety and depression among teens in the U.S. have been rising for years. According to one study, nearly one in three adolescents (ages 13-18) now meets the criteria for an anxiety disorder, and in the latest results from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 32 percent of teens reported persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness.” (more)

Why Critical Hope May Be the Resource Kids Need Most From Their Teachers

KQED News Mind/Shift – Katrina Schwartz

“Duncan-Andrade is the first to admit that students need to learn to read, write, think and do math — he has a doctorate, after all. But he doesn’t think educators can close the opportunity gap if they don’t stop pretending that the conditions students live in, and what happens to them outside of school, isn’t part of being a teacher. Those experiences are a critical part of whether kids are prepared to learn or not.” (more)